Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Elf Day 12--The BIG REVEAL

Well, first I have to tell you how much fun this has been, and how much closer it has brought all of us! It's true that when you serve someone--thinking about their needs and happiness--you grow to love them. And when you realize how someone has served you, thinking about your happiness, you feel a great love and appreciation for them, too. Here is my last gift from my Secret Elf. Isn't the packaging beautiful?

And inside, one of my big secret wishes:

A sampler of the Pretties Kit!

I am so touched by this gift! I haven't been able to justify ever purchasing this, and I've *really* wanted to! What a sweet, thoughtful thing to do!

Ok, I've made you wait long enough. LOL My Secret Elf is:


Thank you so much, Kathy, for making this a special Christmas! It's a blessing to have such wonderful friends! My heart is truly touched by your generosity and the beauty of who you are, inside and out!

Merry Christmas to all who make the holiday special for others !

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Candy

My Elf is *so* amazing! She seems to know all the projects that I have looked at online and thought, "Ohhh, I like it! But I could never make it!" Look at this awesome acetate box! Do you know how many times I have wanted to make one?? And now I can, because I have an actual sample IN MY HANDS! Thanks so much, Secret Elf! Merry Christmas!

And don't you be worried about that Toblerone. I promise it will *not* go to waste! :-)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

You know you're old when . . .

I don't know if you can read the saying on the tissue pack:
"At our age, swimming is dangerous. Lifeguards don't try as hard."
LOLOL Isn't that the truth! I love you, Elf! That tissue cover is adorable! And I love my new name tag! Now I *have* to go to Convention, right? Thanks for brightening my day!

I needed a laugh today! We had promised the kids a quick trip to Salt Lake City to see the lights on Temple Square. Welllll, the weather intervened. We probably could have made it, but Mom would have been stressed, which would have made Dad cranky, and so we decided to be cautious and stay home. My kids are really sad. So are the "grown-ups." {sigh} We'll try to do something really fun here, instead, but it's not quite the same. We're thinking of driving around to see lights here tonite, then a family trip to the movies to see Despereaux. I'm actually hoping there's a LOT of snow, so the kids can see how wise we were to stay home! If you have any great suggestions of stuff to do, let me know!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

On a cold winter's night that was so deep . . .

Isn't this precious??? My Super-Fantastic Elf just keeps going and going! I have always wanted one of these sets, but knew it was a project I wouldn't 'finish.' These cubes are just absolutely beautiful! I tried to get a picture that would show more of the papers, but this was the best I could do! Thank you so much, Secret Elf! Those cubes are going right on my mantel for Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2008

On the 8th day of Christmas, my elfie gave to me . . .

How cute is this snowman???? My elf just picks all the right things! And inside the snowman is . . .

8 Hershey Bars with Almonds! Ohhhhhhhh! My elf says they're for my *whole* family, but we'll see. {grin} Thanks, Secret Elf!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A year's worth of love from my secret elf!

I am just overwhelmed by how much my secret elf has brightened my Christmas! And LOOK! Isn't this just GORGEOUS!?! Every month is decorated (I'm just showing December below), and every month has a perpetual calendar on the back, to keep track of special days! A whole lot of effort went into this gift, and I want my elf to know how meaningful that is to me! Thank you! I had no idea how special this experience was going to be!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Super Elf Strikes Again!

Another gift from my "secret wish list!" I just think this little scribble die is *so* cute! But it kept falling off my orders--you know how that goes! The packaging was so clever--she made a gift card holder! Brilliant! Thank you, Secret Elf! You are wonderful!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Elf Gifts 4 & 5

Wow! I really thought I uploaded day 4 yesterday! LOL It must be Christmas and my brain is on vacation! I had listed Heat & Stick powder as one of my "secret wishes." Would you believe I have never tried it? And that box is soooooo cute! My girls were clamoring for who got to keep the box!

Just last night I was envying someone's decorated Tic Tac box! My elf is amazing! I love the little belly window! LOL This is definitely a project I'll be copying in the future! Thanks, Secret Elf! You're wonderful!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Secret Elf Day 3

One of the first things I did this morning was open my Elf gift! LOL And look, look! The cutest basket ever, and one of those amazing bracelet kits! I'm so excited to make it! I can't decide whether to make a Christmas one, or wait till the new catty comes out and have something NEW!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Secret Elf Day 2

Isn't this amazing? I've been wanting to see one of these in real life, and my Secret Elf made one for me! Thanks, Elfie!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Secret Elf Day 1

I've mentioned my Swappers Anonymous sisters before. We met online last spring, before the Stampin Up Convention. We helped each other stay on track with all the (over) swapping we signed up to do! We were able to meet in person at Convention, and we have remained good friends ever since.

Some of us decided to do a 12 days of Christmas "Secret Elf" swap! Is that fun or what? So every day now, I get a little present all for me! LOL Isn't this adorable???? No one has ever given me a pop-top gift before!

This is what was inside!

Woohoo! We had the option of telling our secret elf some things we would like, and this ribbon was on my list! I didn't let myself order any LOL, so this is a special treat! Oh, and I put the bottom of the pop-top in the photo, because I wanted you to see how cute it is with that snow flurry!

Thanks, Christmas Elf!!!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

She's making a list, checking it twice (or 3 or 4 times)

Love these Christmas list books! The tutorial is available from Splitcoaststampers here.

My Dad was an office supply junkie, and I inherited that trait in full measure! I have been accused of homeschooling just so I could have all the supplies and equipment. LOL And now papercrafting just adds new excuses for more and better stuff! Anytime I can dress up a notebook and pen, I'm all over it.

Today is wrapping day. I'm trying to make room in my closet for my actual clothes. So far I have wrapped 4 books for the cousins. LOL My sweet 9yo daughter keeps wanting to help, and there are some things I just want to keep a surprise! Normally I can stay up later than the kids, but not on these muscle relaxers. Anyway, I have to write down what I wrap, or my aging 40-something brain will forget and freak out later because I can't find something or accidentally buy two. This notebook is the perfect place!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Go on and kiss da girl!

Here are a few of the *40* lip balm holders we made last week. And still more to go for my daughters to give their friends.

Thanks to everyone for their well wishes! I really am feeling better. It's just driving me crazy not being able to finish my "To Do" list at Christmas-time!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Acetate Pillowbox

I can't get enough of these pillowboxes! This is the version we made at Card Buffet, and probably what my girls will give out to their friends. I purchased the heavyweight acetate at Staples (in the copy center).

Stamps: Deer Friends
Paper: Baja Breeze, Real Red, Ski Slope DSP, Whisper White
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Real Red marker
Accessories: Gold Elastic cord, 5/8" red grosgrain, Scallop Circle punch, 1 3/8" circle punch, 1 1/4" circle punch, Big Shot, Pillowbox die, heavyweight acetate

Friday, December 5, 2008

Not the best day

Have you ever had your feelings hurt when you were down? Ever asked for help, without revealing all the details, and been euphemistically slapped in the face?

As some of you know, I have been extremely ill recently. I had an "adverse reaction" to some asthma medication, followed by some back muscle trauma. I've spent most of my life being rather unwell, and I hate whiners, so I always just cover up my health problems by laughing and saying, "I'm sure I'll be fine." I try to be a very reliable person. I'm not a flake. I always do what I say I will do.

But today, I left a message with someone asking for a little help, and instead I got a lecture for my trouble. A lecture on personal responsibility, no less. So after spending a few hours with my feelings very hurt, I am trying to be a "Big Girl." An emotionally mature adult--"Be the better person" has always been my style. I'm struggling today to even *want* to be the better person.

So to pull myself out of this hurt, I'm trying to think of ways I can be more sensitive to the needs of others. More aware that they may not be telling me everything, but they still need help.

I remember the first time in my adult life when I realized I could be more sensitive. I had a 1 month old baby (my 3rd) and my youngest brother had just died unexpectedly. My sister-in-law had come to pick up me and my kids to take us to my parents' house. As we were driving, she accidentally stopped at a green light. (Much better, actually, than accidentally NOT stopping at a red light.) Suddenly we both realized it, and she said, "Oh, I better get moving!" She was pregnant at the time, and sick. It was a moment of clarity, in all that grief and shock, that perhaps sometimes when people did "dumb" things, there was a very good--but hidden from me--reason for it. I would like to think that I became more compassionate. More willing to give others the benefit of the doubt.

It's a little early for New Year's resolutions, but I hope I can turn this sad day into a reminder to be a little kinder to others. To give them credit for the good things they do and how hard they try.

I hope you'll join me in taking a moment today to give someone a break. Let someone in front of you in line. Be the one who smiles. Remember our Savior who suffered for us whether we "deserved" it or not. In this crazy, busy time of year, take time to do a little emotional good deed.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Vintage Santa

I found these enormously yummy peppermint candies, and I had to figure out a way to show them off! A Christmas candy jar was just the ticket! I decided I had been petting my wonderful Riding Hood Red and Vanilla striped ribbon enough, so it was time to use it. The tag is from the hostess set Punches Three, stamped in Riding Hood Red on Very Vanilla and punched out with the scalloped square punch.

I am more of a Father Christmas person than a real Santa gal, so I love the retired SU set, Old fashioned Christmas. I stamped it in Black Staz-On in the lid and 3 sides.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ho ho ho

This adorable Santa is made with the SU Exclusive Pennant Bigz Die! The die cuts both his hat and the scalloped circles. I used a variety of circle punches to complete his face. Add a little Blush Blossom to his cheeks, and you're set to go!